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The Windy Road to Nowhere

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  • Sat 30th March am: 6 miles in 44:55 (7:29
    Early morning trip around the block. Busy day with kids football matches in Drogheda and Dundalk, nice to get the couple of miles in early.
    Pm: 7.1 miles in 48:40 (6:52)
    Evening time run into town to pick up the car left there during the day. Went in by the Hill of Rath, so mostly fast downhill, but a few very sharp uphill sections. Felt good to get speed on relatively tired legs.

    Sunday 31st: 10 miles in 1:13 (7:22)
    Was up in Monaghan for the day. Did my normal route by Knockatallon. Ran into a few issues with big dogs, but the owner came out and called them in. I’d had dinner about 30 minutes before going out, not ideal. Ran pretty fast the last couple of miles. Mileage decent for the week, 40 rounded up to nearest mile.




  • Monday 1st April: 8.5 miles in 58:40 (6:54)
    Legs felt relatively fresh on Monday having had no long run over the weekend. Usual Monday route, taking in road, grass and trail. Definitely getting stronger, as I held a half decent pace for a while over rolling hills.
    7:13, 6:46, 6:50, 6:44, 6:44, 6:44, 6:58

    Wednesday 3rd: 5.75 miles in 37:40 (6:33)
    Miserable, cold, wet, windy night at the track. I’d intended on 10k tempo, but the kids session was cut short about 10 minutes, so I (gratefully enough) packed it in early.

    Thursday 4th and Friday 5th: 4.1 miles in 31:00 (7:34)
    Near identical times on Thursday evening and Friday morning around the block. Cold, but dry.

    Sunday 7th: 20 miles in 2:28 (7:25) with 8PMP
    As suggested to me above, I was keen to get a 20 mile proper long run done, and see how I’d manage with sub3 pace for a portion of it. Mrs TPP suggested 9:30 this morning was the most suitable time to get it done, so it was on full empty. I don’t mind that really, so drank a glass of water, took a couple of just in case gels and headed on. Loose plan was to run to Dunleer, then Collon at 7:30 pace with the wind on my back, then drop to 6:50 and see what happened.
    First 5 miles downhill horrendously easy, more or less freewheeling. Took a gel for no particular reason. Tough old drag on mile 9 heading for the N2 north of Collon, then ramped up the pace.
    The first PMP mile was hard enough, over rolling hills. I was slightly annoyed that the head wind was stronger than I thought it would be, but felt fairly strong, so did enough to keep miles 10-15 about perfect. Onto Drogheda bypass, I’d 7 PMP miles done, decided to empty the tank for one last one before heading back up the hill. Very tough with strong wind. Jogged up the hills for the last 3 miles, taking my second gel.

    PMP miles: 6:52, 6:50, 6:49, 6:50, 6:49, 6:44, 6:44, 6:50

    42.5 miles for the week, about 20 of them at PMP or faster. Best week of running in a long time, and I’m feeling healthy. Maybe, just maybe...




  • Monday 8th: 8 miles in 59:45 (7:28)
    More sedate few miles on Monday than normal, but no point totally flogging myself. As advised above, better to up the mileage without going wild on intensity. Comfortable enough.

    Tuesday 9th: 4.1 miles in 31:43 (7:44)
    Slow and easy early morning

    Wednesday 10th am: 4.1 miles in 32:00 (7:48)
    Snap

    Wednesday 10th pm: 9 miles in 59:30 (6:36)
    PMP on the track. Was looking to lock into 6:45-6:50 for about an hour. Felt very good, when most people around me were running faster in their various groups, 6:45 seemed fairly slow. With about 3 miles to go, dropped the pace and finished fairly strong.
    6:48, 6:42, 6:47, 6:43, 6:44, 6:44, 6:33, 6:14, 6:10
    Good session, feeling stronger and stronger.




  • Thursday 11th April: 4.1 miles in 30:43 (7:30)
    Early morning run, still very cold for the time of year, but great to be out.

    Friday 12th: 4.1 miles in 30:46 (7:31)
    Had a 15 minutes lie-in Friday morning, which scuppered the morning, but nipped out at 7:30 in the evening instead.

    Sunday 14th: 20 miles in 2:23:30 (7:11) including 12 at PMP

    Howling wind wasn’t very encouraging this morning, and had a really good think about which of my long run routes I’d take, and how I’d manage to get a lot of PMP miles done. Decided to run downhill into the wind to Drogheda, then back through Termonfeckin and Sandpit.

    On a whim, after just 2 warmup miles, I dropped down to 6:50. I was finding some pockets of shelter from the wind, but working a bit in the exposed sections. Added an extra little loop in town that had wind on my back for a few minutes, which was lovely. Heading out along the quays, and right out the Boyne estuary, it was very exposed, fairly tough going keeping the pace at times. Two river rescue crews were on the water today, hopefully just doing exercises.

    Heading towards Baltray, I started veering north again, finally getting the wind on my back. It took me a couple of miles to get heart rate back down, but settled into a good rhythm. Feeling strong, with the wind on my back, I kept the pace for another couple of miles heading up out of Termonfeckin and sandpit. Cruising along nicely in 7:30 type pace until 18, before turning into the wind again, and climbing the steepest hills.
    PMP miles as follows: 6:47, 6:49, 6:49, 6:51, 6:48, 6:45, 6:51, 6:48, 6:50, 6:46, 6:44, 6:48

    Weekly mileage 53.4, which by my reckoning is the highest mileage I’ve hit since about spring 2016. Plan for next week is to hit 50-60 miles again, one more big PMP session next Sunday, possibly couple of double days, bit of a midweek session, and try to stay healthy. I’m making big gains the last few weeks, another 10-12 days before tapering.




  • Monday 15th April: 8 miles in 61:40 (7:43)
    Miserable, cold, wet and windy. Tired legs, just tipping about.

    Tuesday 16th: 6.1 miles in 46:58 (7:42)

    Horrible cold wet miserable. Wintry, freezing, ahhhhh.

    Wednesday 17th: 9 miles in 62:15 (6:55)

    What just happened here? We packed up Tuesday and headed to Connemara, temperature rising steadily the further west we got, 20 degrees on top of the mountain in sunny Connemara!
    Summer arrived overnight, so feeling very happy on this run. 8 miles at PMP over very hilly terrain. One mile cool down.

    Thursday 18th: 8.1 miles in 58:25 (7:13)

    We spent the day in Salthill, at beach and fun fair. I jumped out at Rosaveel to run up the mountain. Such beautiful weather and scenery, it was one of those runs where I just soaked in the pure enjoyment of it all.

    Sunday 21st: 20 miles in 2:25 (7:16)

    Legs were tired from doing a lot of garden work yesterday, but was determined to nail the last long run before Belfast. Plan was for 14 PMP miles. Tricky with the heat and breeze, but looked forward to tackling it.
    First three PMP miles easy, downhill with wind on my back. Next 3 really tough, uphill into the wind. Took a mile at 7:40 pace to climb the steepest section approaching the N2, before turning back for Drogheda. Wind was sort of neutralized by running downhill for about 7 miles, but legs were tired and temperatures rising. Just about hung on to complete the planned 14.
    Fast miles as follows:
    6:51, 6:50, 6:50, 6:50, 6:50, 6:48, 6:51, 6:49, 6:50, 6:50, 6:50, 6:48, 6:44, 6:49


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  • Monday 22nd April: 4.1 miles in 31:35 (7:43)
    Recovery easy run

    Tuesday 23rd April: 3 miles in 22:40 (7:32)
    Dropping off a car down the road and running home.

    Wednesday 24th : 4 miles in 29:10 (7:17)

    10 repeats of the driveway and around the house. One way to do hill repeats I suppose.

    Thursday 25th: 7 miles in 48:23 (6:54)

    Bit of a blowout at marathon pace up and over the Hill of Rath into drogheda to pick up a car. Hammer was tight after overdoing garden work so took a few days off.

    Monday 29th: 8.25 miles in 57:55 (7:01)

    1 easy, 6 at MP, 1 easy. Felt fine for most of this, hamstring complaining just a small bit after about 7 miles. Not concerned.

    Saturday 4th May: 2 miles in 14:17 (7:08)

    Nice handy short one, keeping with tradition.

    Off at about 6:30 tomorrow morning. I’m feeling quietly confident of running a half decent race. Training hasn’t been perfect, but undoubtedly the best training block I’ve put together in at least 3-4 years. I’ve done a lot of miles at 6:50 pace, nearly all of them on empty or close to it. With taper, fueling, pacers, adrenaline, I’m prepared to give myself about a 50% chance of dipping under 3. I’ll be delighted if it happens, and will work hard for it. If it doesn’t work out, it’s no biggie. I’m enjoying my running immensely, it’s fitting in around other life commitments, my body has responded well to tough training. Whatever happens tomorrow, it’s already a success.




  • Best of luck tomorrow man, run well!!




  • Good luck, lad. We'll always have Frankfurt......




  • 3:03 for the Belfast (ultra) marathon *

    Feel a little bit cheated over the long route, but glad to be back in shape. Report later




  • Belfast Marathon race report

    Preparation
    I started off the year fairly well, steadily increasing my mileage and long runs in January. Unfortunately, I lost a good few weeks of proper training then with a chest infection. Bohermeen Half marathon in 1:29 didn’t really offer huge encouragement, and it wasn’t until after St Patrick’s Day that I felt like I could really attack the training. The long PMP runs into April went very well, and against the odds, I was heading for Belfast with a realistic chance of running under 3 hours for the first time since 2014.

    Pre-race
    I don’t like arriving too early for races, and certainly thought I was giving myself plenty of time turning into the car park at Stormont Castle at 8:20. However, I then managed to get lost, before finding the car park. Three different volunteers couldn’t point me in the direction of bag drop, so decided to only put stuff in my bag I’d be prepared to lose before heading in the general direction of other runners. We were directed onto a shuttle bus that was to take us to the start. We then, however, sat on the bus until 8:50 before the driver decided the bus was sufficiently occupied to drive us the mile or so to the castle itself. Hundreds of people queuing here for the 6 portaloos, so instead I hydrated some nice trees along with dozens of other people. Time to look for the bag drop, down the hill, apparently. A quick glance around and I spotted a load of bags on the ground. The volunteer informed me that the vans had already left with bags, so just to leave the bag there. 8:57 now, loads of time to get to the start, stretch, etc. I jumped the fence just as the wheelchair competition got away and stretched for about 10 seconds. Time to go!!

    Mile 1-4
    Despite the relative chaos of the previous 30 minutes, I was quite relaxed and got into my stride very quickly, slotting in just behind a 3 hour pacer. Heart rate and breathing very relaxed, and pace felt fine. I did think though after 6:42 and 6:35 for the first two miles that it was odd that the two pacers were getting further and further up the road from me. Decided for 3 and 4 to ease back a small bit, lots of other little groups were forming, so plenty of company.
    6:42, 6:35, 6:44, 6:49

    Miles 5-8
    This is when things started getting weird. Mile 4 marker was at 4.28 on my watch. At the time, I just assumed that the marker was at the wrong spot, so didn’t stress. However, 6, 7 and 8 similarly were all wrong, so I didn’t really know what to think. The pacers, meanwhile, had nearly disappeared out of sight. I ran a couple of miles with a Carrick Aces guy and had a good chat. He moved on, I suppose, to start bridging the significant gap to the pacers group. I had a gel and decided to just run my own race, still thinking the distance might correct itself.
    6:39, 6:43, 6:45, 6:43

    Mile 9-13
    We were right in the city centre at this point at this point, and after not committing to the pacers group, nor staying back at a 6:50 pace group that had formed at 2 miles, I found myself in no mans land. It got a bit breezy and I started feeling my legs a little heavy. Gradually ran up alongside a lad from home, and settled into a good rhythm again. By halfway, a few other people had caught up with us and the group dynamic helped. Of course, at this stage, we were 0.4 miles behind time, and resigned to the fact that the course was going to be long.
    6:42, 6:39, 6:52, 6:48, 6:46

    14-17
    I was in a good little group at this stage , and feeling ok. Got all my gels in as planned, and I was enjoying the atmosphere. The people of Belfast did themselves proud, great support and friendly runners. Ten miles still to run, I was thinking I could possibly make up the 0.4 miles if I worked hard. Dug in a bit, and moved on in a smaller group of 3 Newry AC runners. It started to get a bit tough around 17, a couple of uphill sections started the pain and fatigue.
    6:48, 6:50, 6:41, 6:55

    18-23

    Mile 18 was pure torture, uphill into the wind and starting to rain. Being in a small group hadn’t worked out for me, and I dropped back a lot on 18. Downhill felt good after the climb, but I felt the first few complaints from my left quad and hamstring. Got the last gel at 21 and just kept on working, hoping for the best. A lot of discontent at this stage, every mile marker being 0.45 miles after the chorus of beeps from Garmins was like a punch in the face.
    7:26, 6:55, 6:44, 6:39, 6:41, 6:44

    The end
    A very steep downhill onto the waterworks had my quads crying at me. Hamstring kept twinging away, and I was really feeling the effort. Tried to keep moving but I was finished by 25. Hit 26.2 on my watch in 3:00:20, feeling peeved off. Finally shuffled around to the finish in 3:03:50.

    Post race
    My fellow Monaghan man was just ahead of me, trying to convince himself and me that we’d ran sub3. He was gutted, everyone was annoyed. I drank a bottle of water and looked around to where the bananas or food should be. Nothing. Got a medal and a goody bag. No food. Finally found the baggage tent, stood in pain, cramping for 25 minutes. Not fun.

    Reflection
    When it emerged that we deviated from the route twice, I was awarded a 3:01 time. Sub3 was there for me, we got messed around. However, I was very pleased with my performance. I didn’t need to go under 3 hours. I know now that I am definitely back and getting better. It felt fantastic to be within a minute or so of good times again. I’ll go under 3 again sometime. Belfast was a return to form. In the words of 000s of people on the streets of Belfast, ‘Keep ‘er lit’!


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  • Friday 10th May: 4.1 miles in 30:40 (7:29)
    Legs were very sore and tired for most of last week, waited until Friday to go out for couple of easy miles before school. The effects of the marathon were as sore as I’ve experienced in a number of years, which was satisfying, knowing I’d completely empty the tank. Anyway, good to be back on the road.

    Saturday 11th: 3 miles in 23 (7:39)

    Nice easy short loop rounding off a very easy recovery week. Good to go again now.

    Monday 13th: 8.5 miles in 58:00 (6:49)

    Beautiful evening for running. Shades and sunscreen required. Within first couple of minutes, I was feeling fresh and strong, so motored nicely for this one around Oldbridge/Boyne Ramparts.
    7:10, 6:52, 6:44, 6:34, 6:34, 6:30, 6:27, 7:37, 6:57(pace)

    I’ve my next few months already planned. Will hopefully get a 5,000 and a 3,000 at graded meets over next few weeks. No racing in July planned, but hopefully steady training. Then, Rock n Roll half in August, Monaghan marathon in September, cross country in October and November, and Lanzarote Marathon in early December. Both those marathons will be tough for fast times, but no reason not to get into better shape, and run well in them.




  • Friday 10th May: 4.1 miles in 30:40 (7:29)
    Legs were very sore and tired for most of last week, waited until Friday to go out for couple of easy miles before school. The effects of the marathon were as sore as I’ve experienced in a number of years, which was satisfying, knowing I’d completely empty the tank. Anyway, good to be back on the road.

    Saturday 11th: 3 miles in 23 (7:39)

    Nice easy short loop rounding off a very easy recovery week. Good to go again now.

    Monday 13th: 8.5 miles in 58:00 (6:49)

    Beautiful evening for running. Shades and sunscreen required. Within first couple of minutes, I was feeling fresh and strong, so motored nicely for this one around Oldbridge/Boyne Ramparts.
    7:10, 6:52, 6:44, 6:34, 6:34, 6:30, 6:27, 7:37, 6:57(pace)

    I’ve my next few months already planned. Will hopefully get a 5,000 and a 3,000 at graded meets over next few weeks. No racing in July planned, but hopefully steady training. Then, Rock n Roll half in August, Monaghan marathon in September, cross country in October and November, and Lanzarote Marathon in early December. Both those marathons will be tough for fast times, but no reason not to get into better shape, and run well in them.

    Sounds a bit mad to me to be doing that a week after the marathon. Why the fook would ya do Lanzarote when you could be doing the flatest marathon in the world (well, one of 'em anyway) in Valencia at the start of December? You'd have groups to run with and feed off the whole way around.




  • Itziger wrote: »
    Sounds a bit mad to me to be doing that a week after the marathon. Why the fook would ya do Lanzarote when you could be doing the flatest marathon in the world (well, one of 'em anyway) in Valencia at the start of December? You'd have groups to run with and feed off the whole way around.

    Sure, I probably am half mad, surprised that’s only just occurred to you. Seriously though, a week is usually about all I need to recover from marathons. I’d not be jumping into another one straight away or anything, but I’ve often raced cross-country seven days after marathons, including my two “proper fast “ efforts.

    Lanzarote is going to be mostly a bit of craic. Myself, my wife and two of our friends are heading over, as we’ve spent the last 7 years talking about the laugh we had in London 2012, where pre-race preparation consisted of going on the beer for two days. I won’t (officially) be looking for a fast time (nudge nudge wink wink), will be relaxing in the sun with a few beers in the couple of days before the race, and enjoying a post-race party that’s meant to be fairly lively, before going home the following evening. What about that doesn’t sound like a great weekend?

    I’m not going to get drawn into choosing marathons just for flat courses. I’ve been down that road before, and satisfying as it was to knock out a couple of marathons that I’ll forever be proud of, it was that very same attitude that led me into a bit of a slump that took a couple of years to get out of. At some stage, I’ll hopefully launch another attack at faster races, but for the time being, the likes of Lanzarote, Monaghan, Medoc are of more interest.




  • Tuesday 14th May: 4.1 miles in 30:30 (7:26)
    Early morning trot

    Wednesday 15th: 6 miles including a 3k time trial in 10:37
    Ran a bit on the track with school kids in the morning, back for club training in the evening. The group was doing a 3k time trial, and looking very serious and focused. I was neither but decided to jump in anyway. Didn’t really know what time I should run but hoped to hang in with the lads for as long as possible. One of the lads was a bit ahead of the rest so I just slotted in at the back for the first mile. 5:37 for the first mile, then I went to the front to do my bit to help out. More or less held the pace until the end, one or two of the lads passed me out with 50m to run. 5:40 pace for the second.85 mile. Happy with that.

    Saturday 18th: 4.1 miles in 28:40 (7:00)
    Busy weekend, so pushed on a bit on this loop.

    Monday 20th: 8.5 miles in 56:30 (6:39)
    Usual Oldbridge loop. Pushed on at a decent pace for the full hour, really enjoyed this.
    6:55, 6:38, 6:39, 6:27, 6:16, 6:25, 6:25, 7:20, 6:40(pace)




  • Wednesday 22nd May: 7.25 miles in 49:25 (6:49)
    Random paces and couple of 1,200m type of mini made up session running with various groups. Enjoyed the 1,200 repeats, tough pace (5:30)

    Friday 24th: 6 miles in 41:24 (6:54)
    Couple of fast miles in the middle of this
    7:14, 6:27, 6:29, 5:54, 7:30, 7:46

    Sat 25th: 4.1 miles in 27:56 (6:49)

    Monday 27th: 9 miles in59:40 (6:38)

    Added an extra little bit on in Oldbridge and worked pretty hard for this, but the weather was perfect, cool and no breeze.
    6:51, 6:37, 6:42, 6:29, 6:23, 6:20, 6:14, 6:47, 7:14

    Tuesday 28th: 4.1 miles in 30:30 (7:26)
    Handy one before school




  • Thursday 30th May: 3.1 miles in 22:43 (7:20)
    Late in the evening trot around the block after a very busy evening.

    Friday 31st: 20 miles in 2:39 (7:58)
    I was in Clogherhead for the day with a few hours to kill. Decided on lots of small loops around the area. Turned out a tough morning of running. I’d done a blood donation Wednesday, wind was very strong, it was hot and a lot of hills. I should probably have called it a day after 16 miles, pace up to then had been 7:25-7:40. Last couple of miles were a proper death march, energy stores totally depleted. It’d been a long number of years since I was that wrecked on a long run, but no harm done. Still learning lessons after 15 years of running!

    Sunday 2nd June: 3 miles in 23:14 (7:45)
    I cut turf in Connemara for 6 hours on the Saturday, worked to a standstill. Seriously good workout, I’d strongly recommend it. Sunday evening, I came home with the two older ones and then did a few laps of the garden. Sore body.

    Thursday 6th June: 4 miles in 29:34 (7:24)
    Took a couple of days off with knackered hamstring, turf cutting always a danger. Legs were probably thankful for a bit of a rest I think.

    Sat 8th: 4.1 miles in 30:55 (7:33)
    Very early morning run before heading to Leinster championship with the young fella. Great day of athletics in Tullamore, and more success for the cub.

    Sunday 9th: 8.25 miles in 58:25 (7:05)
    The first mile of this one was slow laps of the garden after doing a lot of work around the house and fixing the wheel of a tractor. Mrs TPP then arrived home and I happily took to the roads. Motored along nicely at 6:30-50 pace for the most of it. Lovely evening for running.

    Monday 10th: 9 miles in 61:25 (6:50)

    Usual Monday run in Drogheda/Oldbridge. Added in an extra loop in Oldbridge. Beautiful weather. Pace was decent for the 7 middle miles.
    6:44, 6:46, 6:33, 6:30, 6:35, 6:48, 6:49




  • Tuesday 11th June: 4.1 miles in 31:30 (7:41)

    Wednesday 12th: 4.5 miles in 27:25 (6:04)

    Very all over the place session, as I was late getting there, had eaten dinner too late, and left early. Anyway, ran a bit fast a couple of times. I’m sure there’s value in it.

    Thursday 13th: 4.1 miles in 30:06

    Friday 14th: 6 miles in 44:30 (7:25)

    I seem to have had insomnia or something the last couple of weeks, waking up early every morning. Advantage being that I got a good few days running before school.

    Sat 15th: 3.1 miles in 28:30 (9:11)
    Ran this with the young fella, kept it steady.

    Sunday 16th: 4.1 miles in 30 (7:19)

    Monday 17th: 4.1 miles in 31 (7:34)

    Wednesday 19th: 6.4 miles in 44 (6:53)
    Hadn’t really planned on going to the track, but my daughter put the pressure on. Ended up running 800s by myself with 400 recovery. Aimed for and kept the pace at 2:50 per rep, think I did 6 of them. Ideally, 10 would be the magic number there, but 6 is grand for the time of year when I’m just treading water.

    Thursday 20th: 4.1 miles in 30:43 (7:40)

    Friday 21st: 4.1 in 31:20 (7:39)

    Saturday 22nd: 4.1 miles in 30:17 (7:23)

    A lot of days running lately, not much in terms of long distance or intensity, but happy enough. It’s been a busy couple of weeks, lot of sorting stuff out at the house, garden, kids parties, games, etc. Ticking over nicely.




  • Sunday 24th 7.5 miles in 50:43 (6:45)
    Monday 25th: 4.1 miles in 28:47 (7:01)
    Wednesday 27th: 7.5 miles in 54:35 (7:17)
    Friday 29th: 4.1 miles in 30:37 (7:28)

    Ticking over nicely towards the end of June, no sessions or anything, just running.




  • Sunday 30th June: 4 miles in 29:43 (7:25)
    First day on holidays, just a quick run to the shop for a couple of things. Temperature about 30 degrees at 7:30 in the evening!

    Monday 1st: 5 miles in 34:03 (6:49)
    6:45am, and 30 degrees. Pouring sweat, but love it.
    Tuesday 2nd/: 5 miles in 34:43 (6:57)
    Slightly different route, no hills at all, just heat.
    Wednesday 3rd: 10.75 miles in 78:30 (7:18)
    I got lost on a planned 6 mile run, really struggled with heat and dehydration. Not that much fun.
    Thursday 4th: 5.5 miles in 40 (7:17)
    Stuck to the roads I knew after yesterday’s disaster. Went a bit slower, but still absolutely dripping sweat at 6:30am.

    Good start made to the holiday running wise. I might get a session on track some evening, but it’ll be mostly morning time 5-6 miles. Long run not really a goer, unless doing loops with water stops.




  • Sunday 30th June: 4 miles in 29:43 (7:25)
    First day on holidays, just a quick run to the shop for a couple of things. Temperature about 30 degrees at 7:30 in the evening!

    Monday 1st: 5 miles in 34:03 (6:49)
    6:45am, and 30 degrees. Pouring sweat, but love it.
    Tuesday 2nd/: 5 miles in 34:43 (6:57)
    Slightly different route, no hills at all, just heat.
    Wednesday 3rd: 10.75 miles in 78:30 (7:18)
    I got lost on a planned 6 mile run, really struggled with heat and dehydration. Not that much fun.
    Thursday 4th: 5.5 miles in 40 (7:17)
    Stuck to the roads I knew after yesterday’s disaster. Went a bit slower, but still absolutely dripping sweat at 6:30am.

    Good start made to the holiday running wise. I might get a session on track some evening, but it’ll be mostly morning time 5-6 miles. Long run not really a goer, unless doing loops with water stops.

    You home for the 4 mile?


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  • Friday 5th July: 5.5 miles in 38:25 (6:59)
    Streets of Boca very quiet yesterday morning, I think a lot of people took an extra day off for the long weekend. I got lucky with the weather, 5 minutes after I came in, the skies opened. Huge deluges of rain every couple of days here, and we’d our first proper thunderstorm. Temperature hit over 100F yesterday, about 37 Celsius.

    Saturday 6th: 6 miles in 44:50 (7:28)
    A few degrees cooler this morning, looked like a thunderstorm coming in over the Everglades but it just missed us. Another couple of days in Boca before a road trip south to the Keys and west to the Gulf.




  • Sunday 7th July: 5.25 miles in 39:08 (7:27)
    Took it a bit easier Sunday, would love to do a longer run, but heat just too challenging.

    Monday 8th: 6 miles in 42 (7:00)
    Did 4x1mile with 2 minutes recovery. Splits were 6:25, 6:24, 6:25, 6:22
    Tough going, but felt good to be running faster.

    Tuesday 9th: 5.25 miles in 38:25 (7:19)
    It was raining for this early morning run on Marathon, Duck and Grassy Keys. Hot rain, still over 30 degrees, but very cool running a few miles on the Overseas Highway.

    Wednesday 10th: 5.5 miles in 44:20 (8:03)
    I ran the first 2 and a half miles of this run on Key West with the two older kids, then added on another 3 miles at faster pace. Took in Duval Street and down to Southermost Point. Beautiful place to run, very enjoyable couple of days in the islands.

    Thursday 11th: 5 miles in 34:27 (6:54)

    In the Everglades for this run. A lot of rustling in the water and mangrove forests freaked me out a bit, kept thinking a snake or alligator was about to take a shot. Escaped alright, before meeting a couple of big gators on the airboat and handling a few junior alligators later in the day. Great day.

    Friday 12th: 5 miles in 39:18 (7:28)
    Fort Myers Beach this morning, up and down small streets. Hurricane Barry further north in the Gulf, but I think it was categorized tropical storm here. Lots of thunderstorms and rain, so hard to get any rhythm this morning with all the water on the roads.




  • Saturday 13th July: 6.25 miles in 46:44 (7:29)
    Early morning run on the sand at Fort Myers Beach. Beautiful white sand, absolutely perfect for running. Busy spot for tourism, highlighted by the sea turtle washed up on the beach, slashed by the propeller of a boat.

    Sunday 14th: 8.25 miles in 61:40 (7:29)
    Back in Boca Raton, and not out running until 10:15. Temperature was over 35 by this stage, hard work.

    Monday 15th: 8.25 miles in 61:07 (7:24)
    Out at 7, nice to get the few miles in early before hitting the road to Orlando.

    Tuesday and Wednesday: 14 miles walking each day in Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom. We were in the parks both mornings for rope drop. Brilliant couple of days, Avatar Flight of Passage the highlight.

    Thursday 18th: 8 miles in 59:47 (7:28)
    Took me a couple of miles to find a road I was happy to run on in Orlando, but eventually found a quiet road with a footpath. Lots of people out running st 6:40am. Big lightning storm after we left which would have been a downer had we been in the parks. Nice couple of days.

    Friday 19th: 8.5 miles in 63:50 (7:30)
    Took a bit of a detour to see if my cousin was going to do a couple of miles with me, but he canceled. Was struggling a bit in the heat yesterday, so a drink halfway around was a good help.

    Saturday 20th: 8.25 miles in 61:37 (7:28)
    A lot of thunder this morning, but no lightning strikes, so I was happy enough. Weather was a little cooler.




  • Sunday 21st July: 8.25 miles in 61:40 (7:29)

    Monday 22nd: 8.25 in 60:38 (7:21)
    Struggling a bit on Sunday as it was after 9 when I got out. Monday much better, out at 6:30, managed two miles under 7:00 pace.

    Tuesday 23rd: 4.6 miles in 32:10 (6:59)
    Very tough, 3 fast miles in 6:35, 6:41 and 6:33. Went up to Cape Canaveral for a SpaceX launch which unfortunately got postponed with 2 minutes to go. Lightning and unpredictable weather constantly an issue.

    Wednesday 23rd: 8.25 miles in 63:56 (7:45)
    The long day on the road Tuesday and 34 degrees had me knackered Wednesday morning, felt like I was going to faint. I really thought I’d acclimatize more to the heat after a month, but it is tough going every day. Looking forward to a run in Ireland next week.

    Thursday 24th: 8.25 miles in 62:39 (7:36)
    Felt like I was doing much better yesterday, but started falling apart again after six miles. 10:30 was too late, over 35 by that time.

    Friday: day off. Played 18 holes of golf with my uncle against a couple of ol fellas. Brilliant craic. I probably hit about 50 or 60 over par, but had a ball and won 2 dollars.




  • Sat 26th: 10 miles in 78:46 (7:53)
    Tried in vain to keep the pace at 7:45 for 10 miles, but couldn’t, despite it being just 7am. Good to do a longer run though.

    Sat evening: 3k in 17 with the young lad
    He wanted to run in Florida, did well.

    Sunday 27th: 9 miles in 63:20 (8:09)
    10am when I got out, 35 Celsius! Didn’t attempt to run fast at all, just tipped around.

    Monday 29th: 8.25 in 64 (7:46)
    Tuesday 30: 8.25 miles in 63:30 (7:42)
    Wednesday 31st: 7.55 in 59:20 (7:51)

    Rounded off to an even 200 miles for the month of July, finishing off the holidays. Delighted I ran so much, but it was so difficult to run at any sort of pace, I probably didn’t make a lot of gains. Certainly better than not running. Long trip home Wednesday and Thursday.




  • Ned Run 5 mile race 2019

    Up in Scotstown to do the 5 mile race. The two oldest kids running and my mother, another family affair. Set off not knowing how I’d do, but hoping to get as close to sub30 and top 10 as possible.
    Ran hard enough, and was in 13th after half a mile coming into the village. Felt fairly good and confident I’d pick off a few. Kept all the miles in 6:05-6:12 region, got myself up to 7th by the start of the 5th mile. Opened a large gap and kept it, 6th too far up the road. 30:42 (6:08) decent enough time, a few seconds faster than last year. The kids finished in a wild sprint against each other in 42:xx. Good time for them, after no real running for a month.




  • You done yourself more good than harm running in that weather!!




  • OOnegative wrote: »
    You done yourself more good than harm running in that weather!!

    Kept the weight under control if nothing else. Reckon I put on a couple of pounds despite running most days, probably would have put on a couple of stone otherwise! Great holiday, don’t give a hoot if I’m more or less fit after it. Couple of weeks running in cooler temperatures I’ll probably see some benefits.




  • Sun 4th August: 7.5 miles in 54 (7:12)
    I took a couple of days off after the 5 mile race, legs were fairly tight. This was good, couple of faster miles in the middle. I found the hills tougher than normal, having had 5 weeks with not a hill in sight.

    Monday 5th: 4.1 miles in 30:57 (7:33)
    Nice to be running at 9:30 in the evening, little bit of drizzle, beats mosquitoes and dead heat.

    Tuesday 6th: 6 miles in 44:25 (7:24)
    Out in the evening again. Bright til about 10 still.

    Thursday: 10 miles on bicycle (1:20)
    Towing the two smaller ones in a trailer, we all had a lovely day in Lough Boora in Offaly. Then, spent 3 hours taking in the turf in Connemara. Shoulders and legs in a hoop.

    Friday 9th: 3.65 miles in 25:45(7:04)
    Short run from the Wind Park back to the house through the mountains. Lots of hills.

    Sunday 11th: 16 miles including half marathon


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  • Rock n Roll half report

    I don’t think wrecking myself in the bog on Friday after cycling was the best preparation for this, but legs felt ok. I’d planned to get myself into 1:24-25 shape, but after the 5 mile race, didn’t think I was quite there. Felt confident that 1:29 would be too easy, so decided I’d mostly run on effort.

    I got parked about a mile away at 7:30, ran the mile to the start. Didn’t bother with a bag drop as it was unexpectedly dry and mild. Got going at 8, and settled into a proper pace after about half a mile. First few miles were around the city, and I was feeling fine. Couple of hills over near Christchurch, nothing major. Ran a little bit with a club mate, then I headed on.
    The second half of the race was harder, lots of short drags. Phoenix Park is a beautiful place for running, but lots of hills to be negotiated. Pace dropped back a bit on the uphills, but I was able to keep the flat or downhills at 6:3x pace. The 12th mile I really found tough, heart rate over 180, but I got myself going again after cresting the last of the uphills, and worked all the way home. 162nd place, 1:27:28 (6:39)
    Splits were 6:46, 6:37, 6:55, 6:44, 6:34, 6:31, 6:41, 6:47, 6:34, 6:27, 6:27, 7:00, 6:27, 5:46(pace).

    I’m happy enough with how that went. As I suspected a few weeks ago, speed was a bit lacking, but felt like I was workin hard, and was particularly pleased with the second half of the race.


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